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Supporting Champion Motorsport’s Race for the Clouds

Heather Morris.jpg
Heather Morris - July 16, 2021
Heather Morris - July 16, 2021

On June 27, Champion Motorsports raced to the top of Pikes Peak in the 99th running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado Springs, Colo., U.S.A. This exciting 12.42-mile (19.98 km) race course includes 156 turns and takes racers from 9,390 (2.8 km) to over 14,100 (4.3 km) feet in elevation. The Champion Motorsport team walked away winning in the Time Attack 1 and taking second place overall.

 

For optimal performance and aerodynamics, and to ensure that the car could perform safely at altitude - the air has 43 percent less oxygen than sea level, Champion Motorsport needed to make specific modifications to their 911 Porsche GT2 RS Clubsport car.

To support Champion’s “run for the clouds,” Stratasys printed more than 15 individual prototyping and production pieces including turning vanes, winglets, under door lips and a Gurnee lip. The largest piece was a revolutionary tool-free composite sandwich core wing printed on a Stratasys F900 3D printer using Ultem1010 resin material.
911 Porsche GT2 RS Clubsport rear wing
911 Porsche GT2 RS Clubsport rear wing

Typical sandwich cores are made using aluminum, Nomex honeycomb or foam that is shaped to fit the core of the final part – these materials must be shaped to fit the core of the final part, a process requiring hours or days of manual labor and shop time. By using 3D printing to create the sandwich core for the wing, the team was able to use a first-of-its-kind tool-free process, saving substantial time and expense.

 

“Speed was the priority when creating this wing,” said Chris Lyew from Champion Motorspot. “We had test dates we had to hit and without this tool-free process, we could not have met these deadlines.”

Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport rear end without bumper
Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport rear end without bumper

The five foot by seven-foot wing was 3D printed in seven pieces in Minnesota and shipped to Champion’s headquarters in Florida. Upon arrival at the Champion garage, the team assembled the wing and laminated the piece with pre-preg carbon fiber, vacuum bagged the assembled piece and oven cured it.

 

“We were able provide Champion with a part that allowed them to quickly and easily modify their car for ultimate performance at extreme altitudes – all while saving time and expense,” said Pat Carey, senior vice president of strategic growth for Stratasys.”

911 Porsche GT2 RS Clubsport diffusor
911 Porsche GT2 RS Clubsport diffusor

For more information about Stratasys applications for the automotive industry, visit www.stratasys.com/automotive. To learn more about Champion Porsche visit www.champion-porsche.com/blog and to learn more about the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, visit www.ppihc.org.